La Baratteuse (Woman Churning). 1855. Etching. Delteil, Melot 10.i/iii. 6 3/4 x 4 3/8 (sheet 7 x 4 5/8). An extremely rare early printing, before the additional hatching on the wall and ground at right, and before the etched lines were stengthened and before Delâtre's address was added (in state iii). Described by Delteil as 'De tout rareté'. Printed on white wove paper. The impression was probably printed by Millet. Unsigned. $4,500.
Les Bêcheurs (The Diggers). 1855-56. Etching. Delteil, Melot 13.iii/iv. 9 1/4 x 14 (sheet 12 3/8 x 15 7/8). State with the name and address of the printer, "Paris Imp Aug Delâtre R St Jacque 171" lower right. Illustrated: Leipnik, A History of French Etching; Salaman, The Great Painter-Etchers from Rembrandt to Whistler. A fine impression with plate tone printed in black/brown ink on cream-colored laid paper with full full margins. Unsigned. $4,500.
La Cardeuse (Woman Carding Wool). c. 1858. Etching. Delteil, Melot 15. only state. 10 x 7 (sheet 12 3/8 x 9 1/2). Illustrated: Print Collector's Quarterly 25 (1938): 146; Keppel, The Golden Age of Engraving; Leipnik, A History of French Etching. An extremely rich, well-inked impression with plate tone, printed on antique laid papier vedâtre paper. Unsigned. $3,000.
A Woman Sewing. 1855-56. Etching. Delteil, Melot 9.iii. 4 1/8 x 3 (sheet 8 1/4 x 6). A rich impression printed on papier vedâtre. An extremely scarce etching. Unsigned. $3,500.
The Potato Harvest. c. 1920. Lithograph printed in black ink on green wove paper. 9 3/8 x 12 1/ 2 (sheet 13 3/8 x 19 5/8). Lettered on stone with Millet's initials: 'J.F.M'. Annotated with production detail by F E Jackson: 'F.E.J. imp 22'. Not in Burty, Delteil or Melot. The stone (which is now in the Whitworth Art Gallery) was 'rediscovered' and printed for the first time in 1920 by Francis Ernest Jackson for the dealers Ernest Brown & Phillips in an edition of 200, of which this impression is no. 22. It has since been discovered that the stone was a fake made by Millet's grandson (based on information provided to the British Museum by Sarah Hyde of the Whitworth). The original painting of the subject is at The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. $1,500.
Millet was born into a family of peasant farmers near Cherbourg. He depicted numerous rural scenes based on his childhood memories. Renowned for his Realist subject matter, Jean-Francois Millet was moved by social injustice to paint peasants and agricultural laborers, capturing both the poverty and dignity of rural French life. 'The human side of art is what touches me most,' he once said. Though the artist was considered a socialist revolutionary by much of the establishment, Millet's painting The Winnower (1848), praised by one critic as possessing 'everything it takes to horrify the bourgeois,' sold at the Paris Salon in 1848. In 1849, Millet moved to Barbizon, where he painted many of his most famous works, and, with Théodore Rousseau, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, and others, founded the Barbizon School of landscape painters.
Continental Fine Prints.
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